NASCAR says new rules will put more racing ‘on the track’

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CONCORD, N.C. — With the goal of making the racing better and giving drivers more chances to show off their abilities, NASCAR announced a 2019 Cup rules package that features a tapered spacer to control the engines instead of a restrictor plate.

“Simply put it’s racing less on the wind tunnel and more on the track,” said Steve O’Donnell, chief racing development officer for NASCAR of the higher downforce package that will be used next season.

“It’s taking a lot of what we want to see and putting it back in the drivers’ hands.”

Teams were given these rules Monday night.

O’Donnell said the new package will give drivers the ability to make more moves in a race.

“You’ve got to really think about different moves and you will the ability to make those passes,” he said. “Right now, unless I’m missing something in terms of what we’re watching … I don’t see the option as much going into the corner at the speed that we would have in our new package.”

No driver has yet to drive this package. It will be used at Wednesday’s Goodyear tire test at Phoenix. Denny Hamlin, Kyle Larson, Ricky Stenhouse Jr. and Paul Menard.

The 750 horsepower package will be tested at Goodyear tests at Charlotte, Atlanta and Las Vegas.

“Let me dispel the myth that NASCAR is interested in pack racing everywhere,” O’Donnell said. “It’s taking the best of short tracks and the best of superspeedways.

“The best drivers and best teams are still going to win the race.”

O’Donnell said by backing down the speeds, it also will allow Goodyear to develop a tire that falls off more, putting more into the drivers’ hands.

At the All-Star Race, teams were limited to 400 horsepower. With this rules package, teams will have 550 horsepower at the tracks 1.33 miles and larger. With this rules package, teams will have 750 horsepower at the tracks shorter than 1.33 miles.

The Daytona 500 will again require a restrictor plate in Cup. After that, tapered spacers will be used at all other races. The restrictor plates will be retired after the Daytona 500 in Cup.

With some events having less horsepower, fuel mileage will be different. Scott Miller, senior vice president of competition, stated that for those races, NASCAR will require teams to block three gallons of the fuel cell so that the number of laps run between full fuel runs should be the same.

Aero Elements

  • Spoiler: 8” x 61”
  • Splitter: 2” overhang, 10.5” wings at ends of splitter (near tires)
  • Radiator pan: 37” in front tapered to 31” with vertical fences
  • Aero ducts: Used at majority of oval tracks larger than 1 mile

Aero Elements

  • 750 horsepower: 1.17” tapered spacer (Used at short tracks and road courses)
  • 550 horsepower: 0.922” tapered spacer (Used at oval tracks larger than 1 mile)

Misc.

  • Enhanced vehicle chassis mandatory at all tracks (previously announced)
  • Adding 3 long block engine seals in points races. These are in addition to the 13 shortblock seals introduced this season.
  • 25% reduction in testing (3 organizational tests, down from 4; 3 teams at each Goodyear test, down from 4).

Report: Justin Allgaier returning to JR Motorsports in 2020

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Justin Allgaier confirmed to Catchfence.com Friday that he will remain with JR Motorsports in 2020.

It will be Allgaier’s fifth season in the Xfinity Series with JRM.

“I will be back next year. Same deal,” Allgaier told Catchfence.com “Everything is good. We’re doing the same thing next that we are doing right now.”

Allgaier, 33, is fourth is the point standings entering this weekend’s race at Road America (3 p.m. Saturday on NBCSN).

Allgaier is the only driver in the top six in points without a win this year.

 

Xfinity Series practice report from Road America

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Christopher Bell was fastest in the final Xfinity Series practice Friday at Road America.

Bell posted a top speed of 108.562 mph around the road course.

The top five was completed by Matt DiBenedetto (108.106 mph), AJ Allmendinger (108.091), Justin Haley (107.927) and Cole Custer (107.895).

Chase Briscoe recorded the most laps in the session with 19.

The session was stopped with about 50 minutes left for a hard crash by Brandon Jones exiting Turn 11. Jones will go to a backup car for Saturday’s race.

Just before Jones’ wreck, the left-rear truck arm mount broke on Jeremy Clements‘ No. 51 Chevrolet and his car stalled on the track.

The red flag was brought out for the second time when Preston Pardus’ No. 43 Chevrolet stalled on the track. His car then stalled a second time in the final minute of the session.

The session had a third red flag when Josh Williams‘ car stalled on the track.

Click here for the practice report.

First Practice

Bell was fastest, posting a top speed of 108.559 mph around the road course.

The top five was completed by defending race winner Justin Allgaier (108.530 mph), Cindric (108.346), DiBenedetto (108.139) and Allmendinger (107.967).

Chase Briscoe recorded the most laps with 14.

The session was stopped once for debris with 35 minutes left in the session.

Minor incidents in the session included Noah Gragson briefly going off course and a spin by Dexter Bean.

Click here for the practice report.

Updated entry lists for Xfinity, Truck Series this weekend

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While the NASCAR Cup Series will be off this weekend, that doesn’t mean there won’t be any racing.

On the contrary, the Xfinity Series will be racing Saturday at Road America and the Truck Series will compete Sunday at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park.

Here are the entry lists for both series:

Xfinity – CTECH Manufacturing 180 (3 p.m. ET Saturday on NBCSN)

There are 38 cars entered.

Regan Smith will be in the No. 8 J.R. Motorsports Chevrolet.

A.J. Allmendinger will drive the No. 10 Kaulig Racing Chevrolet.

Saturday’s Cup runner-up, Matt DiBenedetto, will drive the No. 18 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota.

Ryan Vargas is entered in JD Motorsports’ No. 4 Chevrolet for his second start of the year.

Click here for the entry list.

Trucks – Chevrolet Silverado 250 (2:30 p.m. ET Sunday on FS1)

There are only 29 Trucks listed for the entry list. A full field would be 32 trucks.

Alex Tagliani is entered in Kyle Busch Motorsports’ No. 51 Toyota for his first start of the year.

Dylan Lupton is entered in Young’s Motorsports’ No. 20 Chevrolet.

Click here for the entry list.

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Friday schedule for Xfinity Series at Road America

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The NASCAR Xfinity Series hits the track today with two practices at Road America in preparation for Saturday’s race.

The wunderground.com forecast for Friday calls for partly cloudy skies with a high of 69 degrees and a 10% chance of rain during the day.

Here is today’s schedule at Road America:

(All times are Eastern)

10:30 a.m. – 7 p.m. – Xfinity garage open

1:35 – 2:25 p.m. – Xfinity practice (NBC Sports App)

3:35 – 4:55 – Final Xfinity practice (NBC Sports App)